Is your business desirable? Yeah, I get it, everything we love is beautiful, but is your business desirable enough to be attractive to someone else?
If someone looks at a day in the life of running your business, if they look at what it really means to be the owner, at the benefits, the perks and pay offs of being you, do they say, “I want that”?
Why is that important?
Because that dream you have, the one where you leave your business someday, that dream requires a buyer. To buy your business a buyer must want what you have.
So, is your business “want” worthy?
Does the business make a profit?
An owner says: “We’ve re-invested all our profits into the business”
A buyer hears: “No profit.”
Does the business consume all your time?
An owner says: “I’ve lived this business every day for the last 7 years.”
A buyer hears: “You’ll have to work non-stop.”
Have you created good results?
An owner says: “The potential here is incredible if someone just does these things . . .”
A buyer hears: “I didn’t do these things, but you should pay me for the opportunity to do them yourself and find out if they work.”
Ok, so you answered all the questions wrong. What do you do?
Start simply. Right now, schedule 30 minutes sometime this month to think about leaving your business. Put it in your calendar. Hold the time. Selling your business will likely be the biggest financial transaction of your life – isn’t that worth a little forethought?
When it rolls around, take that 30 minutes and become a potential buyer for your business. Ask yourself if it is desirable.
Think about what a buyer will expect from your business. Write down questions you’d ask someone selling your business. Read articles about what makes a business attractive to a buyer. Then, think about small changes you can start making that will make your business more attractive to a buyer when the time comes.
Do this monthly and something amazing starts to happen. Those changes you make for the “prospective buyer” suddenly make your business more attractive to you. The business starts to give instead of just take. You start to expect more from it, and you’ll be surprised how much it gives if you ask.
You benefit. Your dream of leaving someday starts to be much more possible, and your business starts to become more desirable.
If you want to love your business, make it easy to leave.
Mike is an entrepreneur, business coach, and the founder of www.exitoasis.com.